A friend of mine gets visions. He gets them about all kinds of things. He had one about me as a child. I was maybe four or five years old and had on a blue dress. I was afraid and hiding under a kitchen table to get away from whatever danger was there. I was very afraid.
I had a blue dress as a child. A blue cotton dress and he described a blue cotton dress. My friend is a Christian. I don't claim to know all the says God talks to His children today. He talked to them through dreams and visions in the Old Testament.
I don't remember much about that day all those years ago. Mother had taken my sibs somewhere and I was home with my dad. I remember sitting very quietly on the edge of my bed, when Mother returned with my sibs. I have no memories of happenings after Mother sat by me on the bed to learn what my problem was.
Many years later, Mother and I talked about that day. She found a plug of hair about the size of a quarter missing from my head. She found that plug of hair in the kitchen garbage can. She never knew what about me had provoked my dad so much that day. She didn't ask my dad.
If my friend's vision is accurate, I must have been scared out of my wits that day. My dad was 6' 3 1/2" and 240 - 250 lbs. He was a large man to say the least with a loud voice. He could be very charming or very mean. If he didn't want to be bothered, he was very mean. He often couldn't be bothered with his own children.
He didn't understand children are gifts from God. He was onc
Some are circulating an untruth about the number of executive orders Obama has signed as President of the United States.
Looking at the federal archives website says he has signed much fewer than the 900 some claim. He's signed 137, which is the least since 1929.
A little number jockeying about this is interesting. For instance, from 1789-1929, a period of 140 years, only 5088 EOs were signed. This nation endured 9 wars and 33 recessions/depressions.
From 1929 - 2012, a period of 83 years, 8,538 EOs were signed. This nation endured 10 wars, The Great Depression, and 13 recessions.
From 1929 - 2012, FDR (D) signed the greatest number at 3466, which is 41% during the given time frame.
Herbert Hoover (R) signed 995, which is 12% during that time frame.
Harry S. Truman (D) signed 893, which is 10.5% during the same period.
Dwight D. Eisenhower (R) signed 481, which is 5.6% during this period.
Hoover, FDR, and Truman had large economic and security issues causing great concern. Some will argue the validity of their intervention with EOs and justify them with language in the US Constitution. I disagree with their arguments and conclusions.
During the years 1929 - 2012, Democrats signed 67% of the EOs and Republicans 33%. If FDR is normed with Hoover and Truman, Democrats signed 53% of EOs while Republicans signed 47%.
Removing The Great Depression, WWII, Korea, and the remainder of Ike's years in the WH, the numbers look a bit different. A total of 2703 EOs were signed.
Ronald Reagan (R) is the number one signer of EOs at 380 or 14%. He broke the USSR through a technology race.
The second place holder is Bill Clinton (D) at 363 EOs or 13%. He is considered by some to have flaunted his executive power in the face of the Constitution.
The third place holder is Richard Nixon (R) at 345 or 12%.
Then we have LBJ (D) at 323 EOs or 11.9%.
If we assume linear relationships between the years, EOs signed, and numbers of wars and recessions/depressions, the numbers provide me with some interesting stuff.
From 1789 - 1929, they averaged 36 EOs/year and experienced war every 15.5 years and economic distress every 4.24 years.
From 1929 - 2012, they averaged 103 EOs signed and experienced war every 8.3 years and economic woes every 5.9 years.
If we throw out the period of the heaviest users of EOs and review only 1961 - 2012, they averaged 53 EOs/year and experienced war every 6.4 years and economic burps every 6.4 years.
If we consider the normal circumstances to be the years from 1789 - 1929, assuming linear relationships, the number of EOs signed from 1929 - 2012 should have been 3016. The number of EOs signed from 1961-2012, should have been 1853. Yet they signed 8538 and 2703, respectively.
The frequency of economic downturns is not significantly different. When viewed from the numbers of wars, war is coming 2 - 3 times more frequently but that is not alarmingly more frequent.
A review of some of the titles of EOs did not yield anything of relevance either. FDR issued 42% of his EOs between 1933 - 35. Many had nothing to do with The Great Depression, it appears.
Obama's track record is 1.6% at most, which is not a bad record. However, a review of the titles reveals some actions taken many including me disagree with, which should be the real point and not the numbers. And yet Republicans have done similarly.
Because of that, I would prefer weighty matters be taken before Congress by both parties. The WH has been evenly split between the number of Republicans and Democrats holding the office. Therefore, both parties need accountability leveraged by Congress.
If we are going to make "much ado" about something, let's get the information accurately cited first.
There are some discrepancies in the numbers at the federal archives website, which were not investigated because they were not that relevant overall.
This is not an endorsement for President Obama's re-election bid. We are diametrically opposed on many issues and he does not seem to truly understand the American mindset.
My dad fancied himself to be the champion domino player of West Texas. He played his father-in-law, who Daddy claimed was really good, and anyone else that would play. He and I had played some and it was always fun. He usually won but it was a game to me.
On one visit, he wanted to play a game. I agreed.
I won the first game. Daddy immediately challenged me to the best of three. I didn't realize what was going on. As we played the second game, Daddy became disgruntled over the way it was going. I was far ahead and he couldn't get enough points. When he realized he never would get enough points to win that game, my light-heartedness irritated him and he lashed out.
I still didn't realize what was going on. I had time with my dad and I was happy. I was just playing to spend time with him.
He lost and immediately challenged me to the best of five. He was being really ugly about it. Then I got it. He was angry with me for beating him and he was becoming a sore loser. He wouldn't listen to reason and continued with his verbal abuse. I was in my early 30's at this time and beginning to come into my own in some ways regarding him. I didn't want his abusiveness.
I let him know up to that point I hadn't been serious about it at all and why. He was beyond reason. I informed him he was going to lose the next game and quickly because I was then serious. It was not just a game. It was a challenge to play for keeps.
He had never been beat so badly so quickly. He was clearly very angry. He didn't say a word to me. He packed up his dominos and we never played again. Dominos were never mentioned again.
My dad could find no pleasure in the accomplishments of his children. He could only find pleasure in himself. While that is sad, I am so glad my Heavenly Father finds pleasure in me. That is a source of joy.
Long before I got the engineering degree, I worked at a job and was considered for a promotion. The area manager had me travel to corporate offices for a discussion with his manager. It was all very exciting and they were nice people. I was very young and they were middle aged. They interviewed me together but they were so nice I never felt outnumbered.
The discussions went well until they began asking very sticky questions about the store manager. I considered my options and decided the truth is always the way to go. I also thought they knew the answers; otherwise, they wouldn't be asking because they wouldn't know to ask. I guessed it was a test. I told the truth and didn't elaborate. I was not promoted.
They never revealed their discomfort with anything discussed. They were very good.
About 25 years later, I unexpectedly ran into the area manager, who was selling cars then. He had long since been let go as had his immediate manager. I asked him about that interview and why I was not promoted.
They, indeed, knew the answers to their questions. They had hard facts on the subjects in question. They were testing my level of honesty deliberately. He admitted that I was doing a great job but I was too honest.
They feared my honesty. If I would be honest about my manager, I would be honest about them, if ever asked by their superiors in such an interview, and that scared them to no end. In his words, "We were afraid you'd tell the truth about us."
They were not going to run the risk of promoting me. He noted their protective scheme had no lasting impact as they both lost their jobs within 5-10 years, if memory serves. He ended that part of the conversation with "no one will be promoted that is too honest." It seems he failed to understand "no one will be kept that is too dishonest."
I did the right thing and paid a price for it. Such things you cannot completely protect yourself from or against. You have to do the right thing and let the dust settle.
In spite of the history, he still acted like he was right and in control.
In one of my areas, an operator was caught sleeping often. They had a bed in their area, too, but it wasn't quite so obvious to management. This guy would fall asleep in the chair rather than the bed on the day shift.
He was an alcoholic but had recently quit drinking. He didn't say when his problems began but they began and progressed. His problems mounted in his family. His wife left him and ultimately divorced him.
He continued drinking not thinking anything of the problems in his life and their association with alcohol.
He couldn't keep a girlfriend. This was really bugging him.
One day he finally decided to try not drinking because that might be his problem. It took him 3 months to dry out. Once he was dry, he was completely and utterly amazed at the difference it made in his thinking thus his behaviors.
His life began to improve and he found a girlfriend he could keep.
He encourages any alcoholic who will listen to stop. His quality of life improved dramatically and he attributes most of it to having a dry brain that works.
One plant was getting its first new manager in awhile. He arrived a couple of weeks before me. The first week on the job he toured the plant making notes of things to correct. One thing he noted was to remove the bed in one of my areas. Yes, a bed.
It seems the operators had enjoyed this bed for years. It could be easily moved and hidden behind various things in the plant. Their possession of it was well known.
Once the bed was removed, the female operator who caused me so much trouble immediately went into the plant managers office and demanded he replace their bed. He refused and she bellowed, "But we need our sleep on midnights! We get tired at night!"
No wonder some plants have so much difficulty getting quality products to market and seemingly cannot contain their costs.
After the alcoholic electrician incident, a foreman and I were talking. He was a pretty good guy and interested in doing his job. He knew there were alcoholics in the plant and drug addicts. Nothing could be done about them because of management and the union.
Early one morning as he drove to work he watched an employee on shift that day stop at one of the bars. He clocked in and waited.
That particular man was late to work because of his stop at the bar. Consequently, the foreman fired him. He was not only late but on his way to inebriation. Both are against company rules and the foreman was within his full rights and job responsibilities to fire the man.
The man was below average in performance due to his problems. He finally crossed a line clearly enough to fire without much documentation.
It takes a lot of documentation, meticulous documentation, to legitimately fire a union worker. I had been trained on that issue with the directive to not worry about it because it's too expensive to fight and you'll never get all the documentation anyway. The union will win.
The plant manager called the foreman and told him to call the man and rehire him. The foreman was disgusted and humiliated but he did it. He lost quite a bit of respect for the plant manager that day.
Due to that, the hourly workers could and did run roughshod over the place in many instances. They knew they could get away with a lot and never face any punishment.
What the plant manager failed to understand is that his actions completely undermined his foremen's authority. Therefore, they were apathetic about confronting poor behaviors of any kind within the hourly ranks. In this foreman's words, "All they have to do is call the plant manager and complain and you're the one in the wrong even when you're right."
In this same plant, lots of motors ran a lot of equipment. They were interlocked with switches all over the place for safety as well as processing reasons.
One day the line was down due to a switch. It didn't take much to determine which switch kept it down. When the electrician arrived, I told him which switch was holding us out.
He immediately moved to within about 3" of my face. His face was very, very ruddy like an alcoholics would be. We were about equal in height. His breath and body wreaked of alcohol. I moved back a couple of steps. We continued to talk and he moved towards me again with about 3" to spare again. I backed up again. This continued until I was completely backed into the assembly line. Thankfully it was down.
He smelled so much and so badly of alcohol I could hardly stand to talk to him. Every pore of his body wreaked with alcohol.
Once backed into the line, I was trapped. The electrician would not relent until he had said his piece. He was angry that I had told him which switch was keeping us down. He didn't want me telling him what to do. After all, in his estimation, I didn't know how to troubleshoot a switch.
Once I apologized for upsetting him, he moved away to an acceptable distance. I had asked him to move out of my personal space prior to the apology but he refused. He insisted on making a point. What he didn't realize was his aggressiveness in doing so. I could have turned him in to management but didn't. That was his livelihood and his treatment of me wasn't that big a deal.
That apology was all he needed. His attitude shifted dramatically and he became quite congenial. It was almost like watching Dr. Hyde and Mr. Jekyll.
I didn't know what else to do other than let him air his grievances towards me and apologize for my behavior. He never did apologize but I am only responsible for myself.
I have spent years in the bowels of manufacturing plants helping to bring numerous products to market that touch virtually every aspect of life.
|Pamela Quillin, P.E.